Old church (picture belonged to Olivia Dominique). Click to enlarge.

Highlights of  the History of

St. Caspar Catholic Church

    

1850 Earliest parish records.
 
1850s and 1860s Mass said monthly in homes by area priests; about 10 Catholic families in 1865.
 
1872 Became mission to Edgerton; 1 1/2 lots were purchased at the corner of Clinton and Jefferson streets for $300.
 
About 1873 Old Methodist church purchased and moved to the corner of Clinton and Jefferson streets; the $600 to renovate it was paid off the same year by 15 families.
 
1875-1909 Archbold priests served the Wauseon mission.
 
1888 Church extensively repaired.
 
1895 Church completely destroyed by fire; Mass said in Town Hall; after fundraising (to which many Protestant families contributed) cornerstones for new church laid in August.
 
1896 Mass said for the first time in new church in February; interior completed in August; dedicated in September by Bishop of Cleveland.
 
1909 Became mission of Swanton; new location for cemetery purchased for $860; 49 bodies transferred.
 
1913 Old parsonage purchased.
 
1915 Pipe organ installed in church.
 
1919 Received first pastor (on Thanksgiving Day); by 1921 a parish hall had been secured and church and parsonage improved.
 
1923 Subscription of $6,000 taken up to build a new parsonage since old one had been sold.
 
Late 1920s Church choir organized.
 
1943 Congregation of 116 families (about 380 people); Father Louis Walter began longest pastorate in our history (16 years); during his pastorate, sanctuary enlarged and the basement renovated to include fellowship hall, two classrooms, and a kitchen; Father Walter also hired Notre Dame Sisters from Napoleon to teach elementary children once per week, which continued until 1973; house adjoining church was purchased and rented out.
 
1953 Feather parties began.
 
1959 First steps toward developing outreach program for migrants and settled-out migrants.
 
1961 Congregation of 225 families; 650 people attended Sunday Masses.
 
1963 Forty acres purchased at $700 per acre for new church.
 
1965 Cornerstone laid in June for $450,000 church--of which $132,000 had been pledged.
 
1966 Church dedicated December 18 by Bishop Rehring.
 
1968 Congregation of 320 families (1,382 people); parish had doubled in past 10 years.
 
1971 Parish rectory and administration center completed in January at a cost of $70,000; old rectory sold for $20,000.
 
About 1970 First full-time religious education coordinator hired (Sister Noella Finn); summer schools held for Spanish with classes sometimes led by local seminarians and several Franciscan nuns and sometimes had Spanish priest.
 
1975 First lay deacon  for the parish, Juan Rodriguez was ordained, followed by James Dominique in 1976; parish garage used for religious education classes.
 
1980 Church mortgage burned.
 
1984 Dedication of basement classroom expansion (cost $96,400).
 
1988 Parking lot expanded and church air conditioned.
 
1992 Memorial tree program begun.
 
  Scripture study group formed.
 
  New sound system installed in the Church.
 
1993 "Over 55" Club was formed.
 
Knights of Columbus energized as main men's group of the parish, though they are independent.
 
1994 Adult parish retreats on annual basis - along with Parish Missions.
 
1995 "Couple Power" - married couples enrichment.
 
Reactivated Cemetery Board.
 
"Sacred Heart" Shrine destroyed by fire.
 
1996 Adult discussion groups formed.
 
Y.E.S. (Youth Engaged in Service) formed for high school youth group.
 
Encountered the computer age.
 
1997 Developed new cemetery section.
 
Hired 1st youth minister.
 
Committee to study building expansion formed.
 
1998 Paved cemetery roads.
 
New Shrine storage building built to replace other one that was destroyed by arsonist.
 
Involved with deanery parish collaborations.
 
1999 450 youth in religious education program.
 
Added new granite pillars and signs to cemetery.
 
Installed new telephone system.
 
Relocated parish offices.
 
Hired a part-time bookkeeper.
 
New choir director attained.
 
New contemporary musical group "The Spirit Seekers".
 
Evangelization team formed.
 
Guadalupe Society formed.
 
Rosary/Alter Society restructured into 3 "circles".
 
2000 Sesquicentennial year.
 
  January 8    Kickoff
  March 26    Mission
  June 25    Main celebration
  December 17   Toledo Symphony Orchestra
 
New church roof installed.
 
New church boiler installed.
 
Parish Council restructured their by-laws (Now called Pastoral Council).
 
Pieta statue purchased and erected in the new St. Caspar's cemetery extension.
 
September 13 - an arsonist started a fire in the penitential room. Estimated $10,000 damage. Could have been worse as no persons were hurt and fire was discovered late in the evening. had it burned overnight, damage would have been tremendous.
 
Parish website online.
 
2002 Groundbreaking for the Parish Life Center.
 
New roof completed on the church.
 
Celebration of the 40th anniversary as a priest of Fr. Bob Holden.
 
2000-2003 Completion of main floor of Parish Life Center, elevator, classrooms, meeting rooms, restrooms, St. Vincent de Paul pantry, Chapel, driveways, additional parking and landscaping.
 
2003 Dedication of new Parish Life Center.
 
Lyons parish was closed and persons at Lyons parish were invited to join St. Caspar.
 
2006 An inter-denominational bereavement program was begun to serve Wauseon and community at the request of Jane Moore.
 
2007 Sold 4.2 acres of land on the south side of the property to Vrebahoff to allow the parish to cancel the $500,000 unpaid debt.
 
Retirement of Fr. Bob Holden and the beginning of pastoral leadership with Fr. Ed Schleter.
 
Spanish Masses started on a regular basis.
 
2008 Cheryl Savage Head - CRE for the Jr. High and Sr. High Religious Education program died suddenly. Full leadership went to Barb Bonfert.
 
Pastoral Council conducted a Pastoral Vitality Assessment to guide the ongoing implementation of goals to accompany the current Parent Vision Plan.
 
2009 Sister Annette Langenderfer was hired to be the Spanish translator and liaison for the Spanish membership of the parish.
 
A core committee of parishioners developed and provided a Community Garden for the use for any families who may wish to grow their own food. This garden continues to be of use.
 
Dolores Spieles was hired to be ongoing Mentor to the Religious Education catechists.
 
The parish web site was updated to help provide an updated communication system.
 
2009-2010 St. Caspars joined with the Diocese Evangelization Program with sixty persons visiting many less-than-regular attendees.
 
2010 Kay Sevenich retired as many years a parish secretary.
 
Fr. Ed Schleter announced his retirement to occur in June, 2011.
 
2011 Fr. Dave Bruning becomes Pastor of St. Caspar, July 2011.
 
2012 On June 16, 2012, Father Bob celebrated his 50th Ordination Anniversary at the Parish Life Center.
 
2016 Fr. Dave Bruning travels on a Holy Land pilgrimage April 4-14.
 
  St. Caspar's Parish Jubilee Mass celebration September 24 with Bishop Daniel Thomas Celebrating the Mass.
 
Special Notation Fr. Robert Holden, pastor from 1992-2007. During his pastorate and into that of Fr. Ed Schleter, the following highlights should be noted:
 
The Parish Vision Statement was defined through the work of a parish committee comprised of a cross-blend of all areas of parish life. This guided ongoing growth and change.
 
The parishioners of St. Caspars Catholic Church are committed to show out Christ-centeredness in our worship to God through the Sacraments. We will extend a warm hospitable welcome to all people who join us in our worship service.
We recognize the key to Christian formations is through Christian education. Therefore, we will provide a well-rounded educational service too all of our parishioners, the very young to our valued senior members. Christian education is seen to be the vital element that allows us to grow in our rich Catholic tradition and allows us to enhance our Biblical knowledge.
Members of St. Caspars will be eager to extend a helping hand to those in our community, our nation or anywhere in the world who are in need of our assistance. In the spirit of a unified parish community, we will strive to address and support all of our spiritual needs with proper physical facilities.
 
 
Special Thanks *** A very Special Thanks to Dolores Spieles for providing this important update to our Parish history. ***
 
   
Click here to view history of pastors at St. Caspar Catholic Church